I get all critical

So last night I went to Zizzi  in Brighton. A beautiful location by the Marina, and as Zizzi is a chain you know that the prices are reasonable and the food OK too. We initially sat outside, after waiting 5 minutes for a waitress to notice us by the ‘Wait here to be seated’ sign, and show us to a table. We rapidly moved inside to escape the wasps.

The service was slow. Very slow. The waitress was helpful and polite but struggled to understand my Canadian friends' orders, because the waitress herself did not have English as a first language.

The mussel starter was spicy and interesting, enough mussels to share, and we all enjoyed them. Zizzi have a strange policy of selling you bread rather than providing it, free bread is something I expect at a restaurant, so we chose a mixed bread starter to share as well. The bread was….bread, some with olives, or olive oil, handy to mop up the sauce from the mussels.

Main courses were chosen and once ordered (helloooooo waitress?....) arrived promptly, with fresh parmesan if required, a nice touch.

My lasagne was tasty but sloppy, far too sloppy and the pasta was so soft as to be totally unnoticeable, in fact maybe it was the worlds first pastaless lasagne! There were, of course, no discernable layers to the lasagne. Garfield would have wept. My good friend Alison over at Love, Laughs and Life after the Big C makes a far superior lasagne.

My friends man had a pizza, which looked fine, if a little dry. He didn’t complain but men rarely do in my experience.

My friend had the Ravioli with pesto and pine nuts and it looked by far the best choice (although even then it looked a little oily). It was a classic ‘I wish I’d ordered that’ moment.

Drinks choices for the teetotal were limited. No ginger beer which is never a good sign in my opinion, and as usual glasses of bottled orange and apple, no ‘freshly squeezed’ options. (California has spoiled me) I settled for tomato juice (and wasn't offered tabasco or Worcester sauce as additions) and my friend had an Appletiser.

Desserts were better, more interesting choices and nice combinations. I had Pannacotta with fruit, my friends had cherry and almond tart and Zabaione respectively, and both were nice, but the zabaione proved too rich to finish (to be fair I think I could have finished it!), while the cherry tart was the best option, leaving us all wanting more.

So for £20 a head we had pleasant meal, not great, not terrible. The service needs to snap to it a bit, waitresses should be there when I need them, not hiding out the back somewhere, they should be watching tables, not me having to hunt for them. (my friend had to get up and walk the restaurant to find someone to request the bill!)

Here’s hoping you enjoyed my first ever restaurant review. I don’t see a career as a food critic but maybe it’ll help someone in their choice of eating places..

Special offer vouchers for Zizzi available at http://www.zizzi-offers.co.uk/


  1. Hmmmm... I tend to see that a good deal more in recent times. Service is getting slower and unless they're trying to get you out to clear a table they tend to ignore you even if you are waiting to settle up.
    I have a feeling that the American service ethos may have spoiled both of us.

  2. Service is key to me ... and having lived in the USA for 2 years, you will never find better service than there .. Slovak service os bloody awful compared... I mean, does it cost much to smile ?

  3. As my friend lives in the huts on the marina, the yellow and blue ones we always eat out on the marina when im there but have never tried Zizzi ... dont know that we will now lol! x

  4. I don't know what it is about Zizzi... I've been in the Eastbourne one - nice but sloooow service again, which was fine cos we were on a hen night so LOTS of gossip to keep us occupied! and hubby's been in the St Alban's one and it took over three quarters of an hour from ordering to get served! :O

  5. For me, good service is really important, as I eat out in a Proper Restaurant once in a blue moon (probably once or maybe twice a year, maybe three or four if you count taking the child to Pizza Hut). So if the service is poor and I'm sat waiting for ages, the experience is really spoiled, and I can't afford to do it again for ages.